Bottle feeding is straightforward, but you will want to ensure that your baby can swallow well, and that he is not taking in air with the milk.
1. Never allow to leave your baby with the bottle propped up on a support or cushion; it can be unsafe. He could become very uncomfortable if he swallows a lot of air with the formula, and he could choke. Moreover, he will lose the cuddling and affection that he should have while he eats.
2. Incline your baby on your arm. It is very hard for a baby to swallow when he is lying level, so don’t feed him in this posture; he may gag or even vomit.
3. If your baby has a stuffed nose he can’t swallow and breathe at the same time. Your doctor can give you nose drops to be used before each feeding.
4. Don’t change your formula without first consulting your pediatrician, even if you think your baby does not like the one you’re using. It is very uncommon for a brand of formula to be responsible for a baby’s not feeding well; very seldom cows’ milk formula causes allergies in babies, but if it is, your doctor may advise you to use a soy-based formula
5. Your baby knows when he’s had enough, so don’t try to coerce him to complete the bottle after he has stopped sucking.
To guard your baby from bacteria, ensure all feeding equipment is scrupulously hygienic, and be alert with the storage and preparation of formula.
1. Follow all cleaning instructions sensibly.
2. Wash your hands before preparing or giving feedings.
3. Never add any extra powder; follow the instructions accurately.
4. Give the formula to your baby as soon as it has been warmed up.
5. When making batches, cool the formula as quickly as it is made up. Don’t stock warm milk in a thermos container; germs will easily breed there.
6. Keep all ready bottles refrigerated until they are required.
7. Keep any opened ready-to-use formula in a jar (not the can) in the refrigerator.
8. After a feeding, discard any leftover formula.
Burping releases any air that has been swallowed during feeding. It’s doubtful that gas causes your baby discomfort, and many babies are not noticeably happier or more satisfied for having been burped. Swallowing air is more frequent in bottle-fed babies, but you can avoid it to some extent by slanting the bottle more as your baby empties it so that the nipple is filled with milk and not air. Disposable bottles cut down on the air the baby swallows, because air cannot enter the bottle as the baby sucks the milk.
The good thing about burping, whether you breast or bottle-feed, is that it makes you pause, relax, slow down hold your baby gently, and stroke or pat him, and this is good for both of you.
As they say, knowledge equals power, so continue to read information on this topic until you feel you are adequately educated on the subject.